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GIVERS In Light Review

Album. Released 2011.  

BBC Review

Perky, post-Vampire Weekend indie-pop from Louisiana newcomers with a CBBC connection.

Fraser McAlpine 2011

You’d think an album of perky, post-Vampire Weekend hipster indie with big chanting choruses would linger in the mind, wouldn’t you? Especially when these excitable Louisiana kids consistently and yelpily deliver all sorts of charming melodies; each song peppered with dynamic bits, obscured by wafty bits and strafed with fizzy explosions, sudden tempo changes and rickety lurches in rhythm. It’s an exhilarating first listen: you just don’t know what’s going to happen next.

Heck, GIVERS have even got a zingy hit single-ish song (as opposed to an actual hit single) in the shape of Up Up Up: a tune so giddy and infectious they’ve used it in the trailers for CBBC, so surely does it grab the attention. And it’s not like things take a dip in quality after that. Noche Nada’s one note, Morse Code chorus is utterly charming, a perfect idea, perfectly executed. Meantime’s pop-prog calls to mind an afrobeat Dirty Projectors, In My Eyes and Ripe puff out all the clockwork woodwork with stadium dynamics, making a big anthemic mess in the process, and Go Out at Night seeks to bring the whole endeavour to a satisfactory, calming close with a woozy, intimate cuddle.

They’re not short of ideas, they’re good at their instruments and the singing, and they’ve recorded everything in a perfectly grand fug of reverb and sawdust. And yet there’s a problem. This is not music that hangs around in the brain, for reasons that aren’t particularly clear. It’s as if, hidden among all the jibber and twitch, obscured by the smoke and howling, there’s a little charm of amnesia. 

How else could it be that, after listening and re-listening, after being biffed about by their bratty charms, the only thing that stays in the brain is that one chorus from Up Up Up. Everything else just vanishes as if it was never there. Most odd.

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